Last night's episode of Mad Men went right for the jugular. SPOILER ALERT from here on out: From the disintegration of Joan's marriage (finally) to Don's crazy fever dream and an actual serial killer on the loose, the characters of Mad Men were on their toes last night. The main dilemma for the characters was simple and binary: to be good, like the fairy tale heroines of Michael's pitches, or evil--like the serial killer. Don wanted to be good so badly that he murdered an ex-lover in a dream, while evil incarnate in the form of Pauline terrorized Sally, and Joan finally outed Greg for the heartless jerk that he is.
We break it down by character:
Don and Megan: The episode opened with a feverish Don, in a gray suit, and Megan, in an eggplant hued dress with white horizontal patterns and what my mother would call "helmet hair," riding the elevator up to SCDP offices. It's pretty obvious that Don and Megan have very little in common, but at least they're open about their pasts. Megan is worried, and rightfully so, that Don will cheat on her the way he did with Betty, and tarty Andrea in a neon yellow dress with all neon orange accessories isn't helping.
Peggy and Michael: In the office, Peggy was sporting a pea-green vest, midi-skirt, and shoes with a white shirt, yellow and brown kerchief, and a headband. It was a lot of look for such a small person, and Peggy's newfound fashion sense is a bit extreme. She's also become relentlessly witty, a lesson she learned in part from being holed up with Stan all the time, who was wearing--for the first time ever--a button down shirt and pants that were just as tight as his knit polos. And Michael! A pink dot-print short sleeve shirt with a orange and green paisley tie for the office and then a mint seersucker blazer for his meeting. It's easy to draw comparisons between him and Don, and long-time fans may remember that when Don was vying for a job at Sterling Cooper he had a hokey accent and questionable fashion choices, too.
Joan and Greg: You could tell by the wardrobe foreshadowing that things were going to go badly when she donned first a black slip and then a black dress with red embroidered roses for her hubby's return from Vietnam. I can't even recall the last time Joan wore black on Mad Men, if ever. For dinner she wore a deep maroon V-neck dress, and to end it with Greg, she wore an ice-blue robe to perfectly match her impressively icy tone. For the last shot of the episode, Joan wore black pants, a sign that she's starting off on a new chapter.
Sally and Pauline: In the haunted house, Sally got disciplined by Pauline, who made the girl eat tuna fish with--blech--relish [Ed. note: I like relish, I would totes eat it with tuna]. If you thought Betty was a bad mother, Pauline is a million times worse, plus she was dressed as a large grape. Enough said about her. Moving on to Sally Draper, who has entered her pre-teen years in an orange striped top, black pedal pushers, and navy Keds. She's continued to be just as menacing and questioning of authority as in seasons past. But then after scaring herself by reading about the serial killer in the newspaper, she wore a cute teal pajama set to sleep under the couch. Betty stormed in the next morning in a neon floral print dress.
In general, everyone was either pissed off or crazy in this episode, and the fashion adequately reflected the emotions of the characters. Bravo, Janie Bryant.